The infant classroom is specially designed for infants from 6 weeks to 15 months old to support infant’s development of movement, coordination, balance, eye-hand coordination, and visual, auditory and tactile stimulation. Children are free to explore their world through their senses of taste, touch, smell and sight. We give children independence by placing all activities on low shelves, allowing them to take part if they choose.
Younger children are placed on movement mats, by mirrors and mobiles. The mats allow children the freedom to move all parts of their body. By looking at themselves in the mirror, they begin to understand who they are and develop a sense of their own body scheme. A mobile not only teaches children about their world, but also builds self confidence, self esteem and curiosity. Once they realize their ability to touch or kick the mobile, they realize they have the power to change their environment. A teacher is always present in areas where younger children “work,” and children in this area are separated from the curious walker by shelving and larger activities. Mobile children are free to move around the environment and choose activities.
Infants can join four or five days a week, either half day from 8:30am to 12pm or full day from 8:30am to 3pm. Infants are on individualized schedules in coordination with their home schedules. As they approach readiness to join the toddler community they transition to the toddler schedule for food and sleep.
A Montessori Toddler Community is for children age 15 months to 3 years old. Toddlers can come to the school 4 or 5 days a week, either half day from 8:30am to 12pm or full day from 8:30am to 3pm. We offer after school care for toddlers from 3pm to 5:30pm.
The eBridge toddler program provides young children with the experience of socializing and learning within a small group of similarly aged peers. Toddlers in the Montessori environment are offered opportunities for exploration, discovery, and learning based on their individual developmental needs.
The furniture and materials in the Montessori toddler environment are appropriately sized and ordered to help the young children develop concentration, coordination, and independence. The children become very comfortable and content within the environment since it is calm, ordered and consistent for them. Toddlers who experience a Montessori environment gain self-help skills, high levels of self-confidence and self-esteem, a feeling of competence, self control, support for language development and truly fall in love with learning. When these skills are developed at such a young age the child is prepared to be successful in all future social and learning environments.
A Typical Day
|8:30 – 8:45
|8:30 – 10:30
||Montessori work time
|10:30 – 11:00
|11:00 – 11:30
|Gathering for stories and music
|12:00 – 12:30
12:30 – 3:00
|3:00 – 5:30
||Afternoon snack, recess, after school activities
Montessori Toddler Program Curriculum
Care of the Person: The children are offered opportunities to care for themselves and gain independence. Activities may include hand washing, combing hair, wiping the nose, dressing and undressing.
Care of the Environment: The children are allowed to explore and care for the classroom and are offered the tools to be successful. The children gain a sense of competence and learn responsibility. Activities may include watering plants, cleaning up a wet spill, sweeping, dusting and mopping.
Food Preparation: Children are able to learn about and try different fruits and vegetables. When appropriate the children can wash, peel, slice and serve snack to themselves and their peers.
Control of Movement: Opportunities for climbing, balancing, walking, running, moving objects and sitting quietly help the young child to coordinate and order his movements and are essential to learning.
Grace and Courtesy: Teachers model and explain good manners and treat everything and everyone in the environment with respect. Young children are very able to understand and begin using proper courtesies.
Language: Toddlers are in the Sensitive Period for Language. The development of receptive and verbal language is very important to the growing toddler. Receptive language is developed through hearing and understanding proper, consistent and specific language in the environment. Good quality books are read in class. To expand their vocabulary, children work daily with many different nomenclature objects and vocabulary matching cards.
Psycho Sensory Motor Development: Children are offered activities to develop their hand strength and pincer grasp. We use Montessori materials specifically designed to help children with supinated wrist movements and eye-hand coordination. We work to develop the sterognostic sense (understanding a form through touch) and offer experiences in crossing the midline of the body to improve coordination and balance.
Music and Art: Singing, dancing and exposure to different types of music are part of the toddler classroom. Instruments are offered for the children to experience making music and to develop rhythm and coordination. Children are allowed to express themselves through different artistic mediums such as paint, clay, crayons; gluing, cutting and sewing.
Our primary program is for children from 2.9 to 6 years old. Children attend school Monday to Friday either half day, from 8:30am to 12pm, or full day, from 8:30am to 3pm. The multi-age classroom is a unique and perfect environment that allows children to start as beginning learners and develop into responsible role models and leaders. Ideally children join primary program at 3 years old so that they go through the full primary curriculum and finish the kindergarten program in the Montessori environment. Although some children who found Montessori at age 4 and 5 can still benefit tremendously from the Montessori education.
During the primary work cycles children receive small group and individual lessons and practice work on which they have had lessons. Children move at will during this time choosing work with the support of the teachers, socialize and meet basic needs at will. This time closes with a group gathering for music and stories.
The afternoon work cycle is another extended period for lessons and practice for the kindergarten and preK children while the younger children are in the nap room. This is when many of the more involved lessons in the content areas will be first introduced. It opens and closed with a gathering for stories, music or other sharing.
|8:30 – 8:45
||Children Arrival Time
|8:30 – 11:30
||Morning Three-hour Work Period
|11:30 – 12:00
||Outdoor Recess & Half-day dismissal
|12:00 – 1:00
||Lunch & Clean up
|1:00 – 3:00
||Afternoon Work Period/ Nap & Full-day Dismissal
|3:00 – 6:00
||After-school Recess, Snack & Activities
As children grow they are naturally motivated to do as much as they can for themselves. They strive to take care of themselves and the world around them independently. The exercises of Practical Life help children fulfill this desire, which is every bit as important developmentally as the acquisition of language or future capacity to reason. These activities are designed to support functional independence and serve to aid the child in gaining control of the hands, exercise and strengthen memory through experience following sequences, and supports a growing awareness within the child of the relationship between practice and learning through direct experience.
Practical Life exercises include many tasks children see as part of the daily life in their own homes: washing and ironing cloths, doing dishes, arranging flowers and washing tables. Another aspect of Practical Life is the human component of learning to get along with a group. We call these exercises Grace and Courtesy lessons. These lessons help children to know how to act properly in a social setting.
Dr. Montessori designed the Sensorial materials used in the primary classroom. Dr. Montessori carefully selected each material and connected activity to clearly demonstrate qualities found in the world such as: color, shade, size, shape, texture, musical pitch, geographic features and botanical shape. Children explore and discover concepts about the world around them using these materials. Teacher solidify their learning through language lessons that support children in using the concepts to share orally and through reading and writing as they are ready.
The Montessori approach to language in the Primary classroom is multifaceted. We provide an experience of rich and precise language through spoken activities, games, stories, songs, poems and conversations. We address each child’s growth towards fluent reading and writing over time from a holistic viewpoint that includes preparation of the mind, hand and eye.
“When the children come into the classroom at around three years of age, they are given in the simplest way possible the opportunity to enrich the language they have acquired during their small lifetime and to use it intelligently, with precision and beauty, becoming aware of its properties not by being taught, but by being allowed to discover and explore these properties themselves. If not harassed, they will learn to write, and as a natural consequence to read, never remembering the day they could not write or read in the same way that they do not remember that once upon a time they could not walk.”
-Dr. Maria Montessori
The mathematics materials developed by Dr. Montessori help the child learn and understand mathematical concepts by working with concrete materials. This work provides the child with solid underpinnings for traditional mathematical principles, providing a solid foundation for abstract reasoning. Children are able to build their mathematical abstractions from tangible experiences, which makes understanding deeper and them more proficient in the long run.
Geography, History, Biology, Botany, Zoology, Art and Music are presented as extensions of the sensorial and language areas. Children learn about other cultures past and present, and this allows their innate respect and love for their environment to flourish, creating a sense of solidarity with the global human family and the Earth.
Experiences with nature in conjunction with the materials in the environment inspire a reverence for all life. History is presented to the children in part through art and music.